The Importance of a Data Center Decommissioning Checklist
Why does practically every aviation institution, first world medical institution, and government institution on earth rely on checklists? Simply put, systems that utilize checklists suffer less mistakes. A data center decommission is typically one of the most complex engagements a company will ever go through.
To help break this complex engagement down into manageable pieces, we’ve compiled a data center decommissioning checklist for you. During the planning and implementation phases, refer back to this data center decommissioning checklist to stay on track and finish your decommission successfully!
The Data Center Decommissioning Checklist
Step 1: Discovery
Discover and log all servers that are to be decommissioned. Schedule them for decommissioning with a buffer for unexpected circumstances.
Step 2: Licenses
Identify and retain all software licenses associated with the server.
Step 3: Scheduling
Schedule the cancelation of any vendor maintenance contracts associated with the server or software.
Step 4: Backups
Backup and save any necessary data.
Step 5: Disconnect
Disconnect server from network. Remove from ACLs, subnets, and firewalls.
Step 6: Power Down
Cut power to all equipment that’s being decommissioned.
Step 7: Remove
Remove servers from their rack or wipe drives inside the rack with data erasure software.
Step 8: Erase or physically destroy all server drives
Physical Destruction Checklist
- Remove drives from arrays and storage systems.
- Shred or destroy drives
- Keep records of any physical destruction performed.
- Erase all SAN drives. This option can risk a breach of data privacy regulations in some instances, so double check those that apply to your company.
Software Data Erasure checklist:
- Erase SANs while they are still active, remotely or locally
- Erase any and all Logical unit numbers(LUNs)containing customer data.
- Fulfill security policy requirements and be sure to leave a comprehensive audit trail.
- Authorize return or resale of the storage area network.
- Potentially use an itad vendor experienced in remarketing assets. This typically eliminates labor costs for the same or a greator return on assets.
- Double check compliance with key data privacy regulations and protocols before reselling assets.
Step 9: Log information
Log any necessary information for auditing purposes, including a Certificate of Erasure if data erasure has been performed.
Step 10: Pack Equipment
Palletize the server(s)
Step 11: Update Inventory
correspond with financial department and accounting department so that servers/ fixed assets are taken off the books and software licenses are accounted for and recovered.
Step 12: ITAD
Work with an ITAD or recycling company for the physical destruction of any servers no longer viable. Alternatively, repurpose them or dispose of them using in-house processes if your corporation is equipped for the task.
Decommissioning servers doesn’t have to be a headache. If you need an itad company that will be your partner, not just a scrap collector, and simplify the process for you, then fill out the form at the bottom of the page and get in contact with us. A dedicated data center decommissioning specialist will get in touch with you soon.
Download this in a PDF form here.
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